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Writer Gal

April 2017

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This Wave-Wracked World...

... and in my corner of it, the open mic was lovely.

A good amount of people, but not too many. More desserts than we had holes in our teeth to tuck them. And the stories. Oh, the stories.

I opened with a song. To, you know, "break the ice." Now, the nature of "Daughter of the Glade" is such that it not only breaks the ice, it boils it.

Next, Sally Tibbetts read us the first chapter of Kate DiCamillo's "Tale of Desperaux" and a poem.

After that, I did not record the order, but here's the rundown:

pattytempleton read us her new story -- the beginning, anyway -- called "Kill Box Road Trip," and it's the sharpest, funniest, deadliest things she's done to date. Jo and Fenn? They're going places. And their knives are out.

brendandetzner read a story recently accepted into a horror anthology (details forthcoming). I'd heard it before in radio-play format. It's just so stark and startling. He is not lavish with his prose. He cuts each word out of bone.

Michael Penkas, my favorite weirdest writer from the Twilight Tales group, read a love story. Oh, but not just any love story. This one... I can't begin to describe it, because with his stuff, it's not the plot. (Although he manages a few doozies.) It's the WAY. It's his way of taking the most astonishing -- even shocking -- ideas and making them completely sweet. Necrophilia and fetuses in jars, for example. He can undemonize demons. And then he can make a shadow in a closet the frickin' scariest invention since 1348.

Karin read to us about an Irish activist who took it upon himself to save the Kākāpō birds in New Zealand. Dave read from his dreams. Newcomer Dave Munger read the beginning of a fantastical short story set in ancient Imperial China. Alfred read from his INCREDIBLE robot story.

And then I read all of "The Last Sophia." Yes. They totally let me.

I was so happy to have a chance to read it out loud. They were so kind about it -- especially as it was at the end of the night.


Over in Japan, the world is shuddering.

Over in North Carolina, my cousin Shoshanna is giving birth to a daughter.

It is a terrible world. It is a shining world. I feel like crying.


In the meantime, news from Drollerie Press about The Big Bah-Ha is thus:

Hi Claire,

I'm really sorry for the delay. I have spoken to Deena and she says that the book is formatted and ready to go. She's sending it to the printers shortly. That process takes a while and then she needs to have you sign them, which will take longer. The full process, with everything done and ready to ship might take until the end of the month or so.

Deena is a stickler for quality so I can't imagine that it won't be beautiful, though I've never seen the Hardcovers- as you mentioned, they're a new endeavor, I have the utmost confidence that they'll be phenomenal. :)

Selena Green
Senior Editor, Kettlestitch
Vice President of Communications
Drollerie Press
Publishers of Transformative Fiction


So. There's that.


But there's also this:

time_shark: "As has become her new tradition, Ellen Datlow has posted the full list of Honorable Mentions that she no longer has room to include in her Best Horror of the Year anthologies."

"Braiding the Ghosts" and "The Big Bah-Ha" both made that list.


Thank you! Off you go!

thank you. just. lots.
For whatever it was, you're welcome to it.
Reminding me that there is a lot of world left not ruined or destroyed at just the right time. Also, because The Last Sophia rocked my socks, and my socks are still kind of rain-soaked, so rocking them is that much more difficult.
I am very VERY happy you like The Last Sophia. I hope your feet warm up!
Oh, no, no, no, not that, I'm afraid. Just an honorable mention! Just a list. :) It's nice to be listed, that's all.
I don't know! Hopefully they will ship to the UK once it comes out; if not, I will send you a copy myself.
We did not so much let you read it all as we did hold you hostage until you did.
My FAVORITE kind of hostage situation!
I love hearing all this good news! Well, the honorable mentions, anyway. FABULOUS!

And damn yer eyes, you were so amusing on Sunday night that I forgot to get bored and look at my bookshelf and see that there was the Locus photocopy for you.... Sigh. You will get it on the 26th!
Hurray the 26th!!!
I can't remember if you're working on the 27th? Remind me!

If you are, I could spend the night and we could leave early and you could drive me back, if you like. (For gas money, of course!)

The house I'll be staying at is just in Hoffman Estates, within 8 miles, I'd say, of Mount Prospect.

Otherwise, I'll make John or Katie do it. Oh, to have friends in mobile places.
Upcoming! In "How The Milkmaid Struck a Bargain with the Crooked One"! Coming soon to a Black Gate near you... In 2013.

If you like, Grey, I'll email you the final draft once I'm done tweaking it. If you want.